Stephens State Park Route Finding

Searching for new trails not too far from home, I pointed the shooting brake west last week. Stephens State Park is in Mount Olive. Since the one time I’d been there many years ago, parties unknown — possibly the Jersey Off Road Bike Association — have put in an extensive new trail network.

Green Trail meadow
Along the Green Trail

All this new singletrack augments the old hiking trails, but it comes at a price. The only printed map that I’m aware of is published by New York New Jersey Trail Conference, and it is so old as to be obsolete. At the urging of my physical therapist, who rides there regularly, I downloaded an app called Trail Forks onto my surveillance device mobile phone.

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Hudson Highlands Fjord: Double Double

Growing up in the Hudson Highlands, for me, has been a gift. There’s something about those peaks plunging down to the mighty Hudson River. I have enjoyed trips to far off places, but there is nothing quite like coming home. Not too big, not too small and never short on adventure, they always deliver.

Sandy Beach
Sandy Beach

Freebird grew up here and knows this place too. He was on a brief visit from his home in the North Country so, with good weather and a full moon, we decided to go on a mission. The plan was straightforward. Paddle across the Hudson from Cold Spring, climb Storm King Mountain, paddle across again and climb Breakneck Ridge, then paddle back. With two climbs and two crossings we decided to nickname it the Double Double.

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Shawangunk Ridge Trail: Run Your Own Race

“I just signed up for the Shawangunk Ridge 30.”

There was silence on my end of the phone as I took in what Freebird had said.  I attempted to deflect: But, we did that last year. He responded nonchalanty, So it will be easy.

Ice Cave Mountain

The Shawangunk Ridge Trail (SRT) is a 70 mile hiking trail that traverses the entire length of the Shawangunk mountains. The not-for-profit Run Wild Inc. created an event to celebrate the preservation of this incredible open space by encouraging people to come out and see its natural beauty. Directed by long distance runner/hiker and barefoot guru Ken Posner, the SRT Run is self-supported with an emphasis on minimalism.

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